Diamond Reflections: DIAMOND DARLINGS
Diamond Darlings, 1973
Diamond Darlings began at Iowa State in 1970 as an organization of
girls “judged on beauty, poise, enthusiasm and interest in
baseball.” The group was designed to “promote Iowa State’s
baseball program and to improve the image of Cyclone Country.”
Darlings upheld high standards in both appearance and knowledge.
Tryouts were held every winter and prospective "darlings"
took a two and a half page knowledge test. The test included short
answer, matching, and multiple choice questions and required the girls
to know the intricacies of baseball rules and codes, the status of
collegiate baseball teams, and baseball slang. In
addition, girls had to pass a
skills test to determine their proficiency in throwing, catching, and
running and conducted two interviews.
Diamond Darlings were a team of bat girls responsible for picking up
bats and foul balls as well as such things as selling and taking
tickets, running the score board, cleaning off the bases, and “last
but not least, provid[ing] color and beauty for the fans.” The 1972
media guide lists an additional responsibility: “before each game
the Darlings take the field and give each player a kiss as he takes
The Louisville Slugger baseball bat company recognized ISU’s Diamond Darlings as the best in the nation in 1974, 1977, 1979, and second best in 1980.
Although teams continue to exist on other college campuses, the ISU squad disbanded in the 1990s among gender equality discussions on campus.